Bentley has announced a series of official continuation models. Following in the foot steps of Jaguar and Aston Martin, the British brand will produce a further 12 examples of the 1929 Bentley 4½-litre “Blower”. Bentley claims it is a world first continuation of a pre-war race car.
Just four of the 1929 Bentley 4½-litre “Blower” models were built in period. They were extremely quick, if a little unreliable! They were campaigned on the racetracks of Europe in period and are now among the most desirable Bentley’s among collectors.
Bentley still owns Tim Birkin’s own Team Car No. 2, registration UU 5872. Bentley have confirmed that this will be disassembled to form the template for the recreation models. As part of the process, Bentley will use the latest technology to meticulously scan each part in 3D and to create a complete digital model of the entire car.
The recreation models will then be reconstructed from 1920s moulds and tooling jigs, and an array of traditional hand tools alongside the latest manufacturing technology. All 12 cars will be identical to the original Bentley 4½-litre “Blower” upon which it is based.
Bentley will then use the opportunity to carry out a detailed inspection and sympathetic mechanical restoration of the original.
Each continuation model will include a four-cylinder, 16-valve engine with an aluminium crankcase, cast iron cylinder liners and non-detachable cast-iron cylinder heads. Bentley will replicate precisely the Amherst Villiers Mk IV roots-type supercharger so that each model is producing around 240 bhp.
The process is expected to take two years of work with Bentley to discuss pricing with interested customers. Bentley is expecting the replica models to be useable, citing the fact that its own Blower has been used at this year’s Mille Miglia, together with daily hill runs at the Goodwood Festival of Speed and a recent tour up the California coastline including a parade at Laguna Seca and culminating in the 2019 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.